Dr. Michael P. Higgins

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  • January 12, 2024
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Seven yard! 21 feet! The distance covered so eloquently by former Red Tornado Robert York in his article “Closing the Circle”. The seven yards represented the connection of the past and present for all Red Tornadoes. The seven yard gain happened to be the touchdown that gave MCA its first modern day state championship in 1994. The play, by Michael Higgins, is also one of the most iconic plays in the fabled Red Tornado history, along with Jim Morrison’s extra point pass from Mike Terry in 1927 to give MCA its first state championship, John Diminick’s 99 yard interception return over Whitehall in the game’s last seconds, Frank Niglio’s “catch” against Carlisle, and the goal line stand against Lakeland leading to Jon Veach’s 92 yard TD.

Mike did much more than run that 7 yards. He is one of the most prolific passers in MCA history. Starting from game one of his career as a freshman for legendary Coach Jazz Diminick, Mike would start 50 consecutive games and demolish all of the school’s passing records. He established new records for completions in a season, 116, career, 355, career passing yards, 5,177, and career TD’s, 55. Michael also has 2 top 10 seasons in passing yards and TD’s, Often overlooked was Mike’s leadership, both on and off the field, giving him his “Chief” moniker. He was actually an extension of Coach Whitey Williams on the field, calling many of his own plays. Mike was named to the first team as a quarterback on the PIAA Small School All-State team by the Associated Press.

Mike was also an integral part of Coach John McKay’s 1995 district XI Basketball Championship team. It was after Mike was inserted into the starting lineup that the team gelled, going 9-1 on the way to its fine 21-8 record, the 2nd most wins in school history. Michael also started for 3 consecutive years for Coach John Lepley’s baseball nine and was named the team MVP following the ‘95 campaign. Mike completed his high school career as a captain of three sports, doing what high school athletes should do, and that’s play every sport they can play.

Michael graduated from Franklin and Marshall in 1998 with a B.A. in Biology with a minor in government, and then from Philadelphia College of Optometry in 2003. He is currently a Primary Care Optometrist with the Geisinger Health Systems in Danville. He makes his home in Denmar Gardens with his wife Tara, and three sons, Mikey, Gabe, and Sam. He is the son of Mike and Patti Higgins, Shady Acres.

Categories: 2016 Hall of Fame